Friday, November 21, 2008

cane box

I have accumulated a number of canes (as you are well aware from my posting pictures of them here over a period of time as they were completed), and needed a way to store a few of them instead of just leaning them against the wall. So I made this box to do just that. And since making just a simple plain box is against my nature, I made it pretty and interesting even without the canes in it.

It is made from oak, cedar, and pine and stands 24" high. The decorative organic growth extends the overall height to 38".

It accomodates a half dozen of my canes so I haven't completely solved the cane storage problem, since I currently have nearly a couple dozen of them. I may have to make several more of these boxes before I'm done. Or maybe I should just stop making canes after I complete the one that is right now standing on the workbench awaiting a finish. Stop making canes? Not going to happen, since I have several more ideas for new canes bouncing around in my head.
If you have forgotten what they all look like or are new here, you can see them here or you can click on "gallery" in the sidebar and then click on "canes."
I have been asked in the past if I sell my canes. I won't sell any of the personal canes I have since I use them on a regular basis, but I will be happy to custom make a cane for you if you arre interested. Just email me at and we can talk about it.

Monday, November 17, 2008

here we go again

The leaves have all finally fallen and been blown by Mother Nature or my leaf blower into the gutter for pickup by the city crew or into the neighbor’s yard and beyond. I’ve staked the edges of the driveway so when the inevitable snow starts to pile up the snowplow driver will know where the driveway is. The lawnmowers have been winterized and tucked away for the winter, the snowblowers having taken their spot in the front row, ready to go. The air has that near nip that promises worse to come. And today there are a few snow flurries in the air testing the atmosphere to see how they might survive.

If I could curl up n a nice warm cave, living off my stored up fat for the next 4 months or more, I would gladly do so. But there are no caves nearby that might accept me and I am too skinny to survive for long anyway. So the only reasonable choice is to face the coming winter with resignation and a hopeful eye out for April. I’ve done it before (too many times, actually) and I can do it again.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

getting caught up

It has been sometime since I've shown pictures of the sculptures and canes and other stuff that I've completed over the past few months. So I'll get you caught up on the output of the workshop now since I know you have just been dying of curiosity to see what I've been up to.

First in line is this little vase that is made from a bunch of scraps that accumulated on the workbench. It is a variety of woods and stands 13" high and is 1.5" square.

Next a couple of canes. This one is called Striped cane. The shaft is maple and walnut and the handle is striped with maple, walnut, and purpleheart.

This one is called Spiral cane because the pieces of mahogany, maple and oak form a spiral down the shaft. The unique handle is oak and maple.

Now a couple sculptures. These two pieces took a long time to complete since they are fairly complicated in structure. But the effort and patience paid off.
This is called Unraveled. It is several strands that twist and tumble into a jumble. It stands 28" high and is made from several hundred pieces of pine that were glued together to create the strands.

This piece is called Whirlwind. It is made from nearly a thousand pieces that swirl round a central shaft. It has a real kinetic energy to it. It stands 36" high and mostly oak and pine.

And that does it for now. All caught up. Now I can concentrate on the three new wall sculptures that I have started and a new cane that is nearing completion. I will post those pictures in due time. If you want to see more of my work go here. Thanks for looking.

Friday, November 07, 2008

OUR President

Seeing the excitement and elation on the many faces of the Obama supporters on election night was a joy to behold. In the many presidential elections I have witnessed in the many years of my adulthood, there has never been a contest that so galvanized the citizenry as this one. I can’t recall any election that stirred the interest of so many divergent elements of our society as this one did. The most encouraging thing is that all those different groups that make up our melting pot society could come together in common cause and agree so wholeheartedly about a candidate.

Now having said that, I have a concern that because Barack Obama isn’t your typical old white guy we so commonly elect, he may be seen as more a savior than a President. And while I can appreciate the many African-American faces with tears of joy freely running down their cheeks, I am getting a bit annoyed that those African-Americans are claiming President-elect Obama as uniquely their own.

I, for one, never considered Senator Obama as a Black candidate. His racial background was noted in passing and then relegated to the deep back reaches of my consciousceness. I supported him because what he had to say about the issues before us resonated with me. I considered him the best man we could possibly elect to the demanding office of the Presidency. I like his intelligence and calm and reassuring demeanor and the studied way he approaches the problems we face. I like the fact that he is able to see the consequences of decisions made now on the future, always looking several steps ahead. I like his commanding presence. He seems presidential to me. He doesn’t seem African-American. He seems American. He is the President for us all, not just for, or especially for, only one segment of our society.

So please don’t apply an unnecessary label to him. He may be the first multi-racial man to be elected to the office, but he transcends any racial label that is attached to him. He is the President for us all.

Thursday, November 06, 2008


Finally it’s finished. Finally we can get back to normal. Finally we don’t have to put up with any more political ads. But in the two days since the election I find myself in a kind of withdrawal that is hard to define.

For the past two years we have been subjected to a nearly constant barrage of political advertising that sought to garner our support for one of the various candidates. Those ads in turn amused and then sometimes enraged us. We could only shake our heads at the hyperbole and misrepresentations, the twisting of words taken out of context, the accusations of wrong-headedness and even malfeasance, and the wrongful claims of consorting with undesirables (like other senators and terrorists). We chose sides and believed what our side had to say about the other side’s inadequacies and deficiencies. But through it all we never wavered from the belief that the process, flawed as it may be, worked.

While the campaigning was going on you would have thought that the two candidates were the worst of enemies. They said and inferred some vile things about each other. But once the contest was over, shaking hands and promising support and cooperation to help make the promises of the campaigns a reality was the gracious end to the sometimes bitter fight. Where else in the world does such an orderly transfer of power in the government occur without actual bloodshed. Where else in the world do the citizens of the country actually have the privilege to select their leader. As a voting citizen I get a tingle of excitement and satisfaction whenever I exercise that right to vote. Tiny though it may be, I know my voice is heard, and that gives me a great deal of satisfaction.

So now that all the excitement has died down, what will replace it in our daily lives? What will fill all that advertising time on TV now that there is no more mudslinging to be done? The chance to catch our breath now that the election is over is a welcome respite before the next onslaught of punditry and analysis of the job being done by the new administration takes place. This has been merely round one of the ongoing fight to bring about all the change that was promised. There are still many more rounds to go in the fight to get us back on track.